Robots Create Jobs, Don't Steal Them
Weekly Commentary, April 14th, 2017
- Equity markets were down in this shortened week with U.S. stocks (S&P 500) down -1.15% and international stocks (EAFE) down -0.38%.
- Fixed income markets were mixed with investment grade bonds (AGG) up +0.77% and high yield bonds (JNK) down -0.16%.
- Markets are Closed Tomorrow for Good Friday
- Upcoming French Elections - The latest Elabe poll results showed centrist En Marche candidate Emmanuel Macron and the far-right National Front Marine Le Pen tied at 23%, with center-right candidate Francois Fillon and far-left candidate Jean-Luc Melenchon close behind at 19% and 17%, respectively, effectively making this a legitimate four-way race ahead of the first round ballot scheduled for April 23.
- Fed Policy – In her speech at the University of Michigan this week Fed Chair Janet Yellen said the central bank’s focus has now shifted from healing the post-crisis economy to sustaining the progress that has been made. These comments aren’t a surprise but does reiterate the Fed’s commitment to further action down the road.
- Oil – Prices continue to make headlines as oil rallied strong this week on news that Saudi Arabia, the world’s largest producer, pared its output last month and is likely to support extending OPEC production cuts into the second half of the year. Meanwhile current projections signal U.S. demand is expected to pick up in the summer, another catalyst that could see prices edge higher.
- Commentary: In last week’s Commentary we discussed how many investors bounce back and forth between two fears: 1) the fear of missing out on gains and 2) the fear of losing money. Of course, there are more specific manifestations within these “fears” that haunt many investors or people in general. One such fear is that technology/robots will “replace us all”—history would suggest otherwise.
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